The realm of pristine beauty. Your land. So they say! Rarely was I summoned to accomplish the task assigned to me at this place. But to my utter surprise, I now over the years hardly get a breathing space here. Perhaps because of those at the helm of affairs, who have failed to ponder over the terrifying issue. At other places no sooner my stay prolongs, measures are rapidly taken to shove me away. The casual attitude of people augmented with official apathy towards this nerve-racking matter scares me too.
"You need not come for second trial. Give us some chai pani and your license will be at your door step." I found one of the agents telling his client who had failed to drive properly during the trial. This was the first shocker. The onset of my journey was unpleasant. Rather than honing his driving skills before getting license to drive, he was offered the license to kill.
"Make way. Keep away"! I saw some men in uniform shouting from their vehicle and whistling an incessant horn in the middle of jam packed road. Because of panic alarm, while trying to make way for their fast zooming vehicle, a car hit one pedestrian. He was rushed to the hospital. It was not the only security vehicle hitting right and left. From every police and army vehicle to escorted civil officers' cars, commoners had to make way for them on congested roads. I was stunned to see that all this only added to chaos and confusion, rendering roads more unsafe. At many of the places, I saw 'traffic managers' making way for these 'special vehicles', and leaving rest of the public traffic in fuss. They seemed ignorant of the fact that managing traffic was entirely different from managing law and order or appeasing those in power. It needs distinctive expertise, not distinctive style!
Sad and upset, I escaped to wider roads but all in vain. I was taken aback to see a speeding high-model bike with three school boys wearing no crash helmets. "It doesn't probably seem to be a place to perform aerobics on a bike, that too by the teens who are not entitled to drive", no sooner I muttered, I saw a pacing tinted glass luxury sedan driven by an adolescent overtaking another car hazardously. Vroom and Thud!!! I heard a loud noise and reached the spot. The lavish vehicle had rammed over the divider and smashed into the car coming from the opposite direction. "It is these neo-rich parents who are to be blamed", said an ambler on the spot, while I helplessly performed my job.
Frustrated, I decided to set out for outskirts and boarded a Sumo. Although the driver had a permit to carry just seven passengers, he not only embarked ten people but even adjusted one on his seat. I was astonished to see that no one travelling in the Sumo objected to it. Anyhow, he left for his destination. From surpassing other vehicles perilously to crossing the speed limits on roads, the driver did not adhere to any single traffic rule. More or less same scene was visible in other passenger-vehicles as well. The loaded tippers and load-carriers plying on the freeway didn't point up a different picture.
From open manholes to unaccomplished topping up, most of the roads over here were poor and had a shaky course. On scantily illuminated roads, I could hardly see warning/safety sign boards and proper colour demarcation. I saw the carefree foolhardy pedestrians, crossing roads negligently, unconcerned about moving gears around!
All of a sudden, the Sumo was stopped by some 'traffic managers'. "You are driving so recklessly and ferrying lots of passengers; come down and show me the papers", shouted one of the traffic personnel furiously. I felt glad for I thought the driver will be punished for his transgression. But I saw the fellow coming back cheerily, after he had some secret chat with the 'traffic managers'. I was astonished to see him driving the way he was earlier.
Miraculously, I reached my destination. It was a beautiful health resort. I was happy to see people freaking out. Later in the evening, it started raining heavily. The visibility was low. I was informed that two youngsters were on a car race, driving recklessly. As my profile demands, I took away a few souls.
During the 13 years of armed conflict since 2004, more civilians have died in traffic accidents than by violence here, with an alarming average number of deaths per year being over 900 during last five years only. Yes, you can eventually fix blame on me for all this!! Of course, I am an Angel of Death. And no holds barred, I am dancing daringly on your roads. Without break off. But your brakes also seem to have gone kaput! Isn't it?